Brunei to KK Kota Kinabalu Bus
There’s a notice on the board at my accommodation – ‘Brunei To Kota Kinabalu Bus’ across from Maybank, departs at 8 am daily, no ticket required pay on the bus.
Besides the notice, there’s also a small map.
It’s a sign of few words but has all the information I need.
I’ve taken a fair few buses and boats over the past year and the greatest thing about travelling around Borneo is the fact you can just turn up, pay, and go. No messing around with pre-booking.
Eating my last breakfast at the Apek Utama Hotel in Brunei, come 6.45am it was time to say goodbye and travel the 2KM or so to the bus pick up point. You can walk the route along the river if you choose, however, to save messing around I jumped in a water taxi speedboat for the price of $3BND. Bumpy as hell, but still very cool.
If the water taxi doesn’t know the bus stop, just say that you need to go to the waterfront. They seem to understand this much better.
The bus stop is actually a pull-off lane along the Jalan McArthur road that extends over the waterfront. Sure in the back of my mind I had visions of turning up at the wrong place, but arriving a good hour before, at 7 am, the bus was already waiting.
Brunei to Kota Kinabalu bus pick up point:
Now this is the only Brunei to Kota Kinabalu bus daily, so be there before 8 am!
The guy running things was already there at 7 am and just requires a few details for the journey. Mainly name and passport number. After he explains the situation with border crossing, you pay him the $45BND (£21.93/$33.87USD) fee for the journey, then jump on the bus. Seating is wherever is free, which for early me was the entire bus.
Expecting the trip to chew away most of my day I brought a book along to read for the ride. Surprisingly, the bus did have a TV at the front which did a great job helping to pass the time. We were treated to the Expendables 3 and latest Transformer movies.
For those wondering about food, sure bring some snack with you, but there is a chance to grab a feed at one of the stops along the way.
The bus stops by local eateries and so on, even a KFC.
Speaking of stops, the Brunei to Kota Kinabalu bus certainly wouldn’t suit those in a rush because of the crazy amount of border control points.
Once you pay for the bus ticket, the guy in charge will explain the situation. In a nut shell, the bus departs Brunei into Malaysia and back into Brunei and the back into Malaysia. As expected your passport will get a few stamps along the journey.
Sure the constant stopping, getting off, getting the passport stamped, getting back on the bus routine can be a little tedious at times. But on a plus note, it’s not the same kind of waiting at airports for Immigration. For one, the only people queuing to get their passports stamped were from our bus, which was around 12 people. Secondly the actually stamping process can take as little as a few seconds. It is a relatively painless process.
Back on the bus, the roads are in good condition, with the journey nowhere near as rough as the ‘rumours’ I had been told previously by folks in Kuching. Even after the 1-hour 10-minute lunch stop from 11.20am to 12.30pm, we still managed to make a good time and arrive at Kota Kinabalu just before 4 pm.
It may not be the fastest way to get around, but riding the Brunei to KK Bus is a reliable option to get to get to Kota Kinabalu.
Riding The Brunei To Kota Kinabalu Bus images created by Tools of Travel